This weekend we had a road trip up to Alnwick in Northumberland. It's well known for its fantastic castle (used in the first Harry Potter film for the broomstick lesson scene) and its contemporary gardens.
We decided to go at pretty short notice so we were lucky to find accommodation for bank holiday weekend. We booked a Bed & Breakfast called Bow House. It's run by a lovely couple called David & Beverly. On my booking I noted that my breakfast needed to avoid Dairy, Egg & Gluten. I find its best to do this anywhere I stay so the owners have a bit of notice.
On arrival we were greeted by David who went through my intolerances and showed me everything he'd brought for breakfast. I never expect people to do anything special for me (I'm happy with bacon & grilled tomatoes) but when they do it's really nice and I appreciated the effort they've made. He left a carton of almond milk in the dining room fridge so I could access it when I needed. I had a full breakfast both mornings which was delicious. I had Bacon, Sausage, Grilled Tomatoes and Hash brown. It was steaming hot both mornings and really well cooked. Gluten free toast was also provided.
I'd highly recommend staying at Bow House not only from a special diets perspective, which they are more than willing to cater for (they also have a separate toaster and utensils for allergies Beverly told me) but the bedrooms are gorgeous and every little detail is perfect. It was one of the nicest B&B's we've stayed in and in a great location only a short walk from the main square, castle and gardens.
You can find their website HERE.
Our first meal in Alnwick was at the Hogs Head Inn which is just off the A1 on the outskirts of Alnwick. They have a printed sheet showing all the allergens contained in every meal. This is also available to view on their website. The server also advised that items such as the fish & chips could also be made gluten free as they have the batter to do this. I chose the Grilled Gammon with pineapple salsa and chips. I must say its the best gammon I've had in a restaurant. It was really juicy, the salsa was really tasty and I loved the chips.
Our second meal of the stay was lunch at Nood Food. It's just off the market square in Alnwick. It's not a big place but just right for lunch. They cover all sorts of diets and they believe in clean eating. I had a Buddhu Bowl which was Quinoa, 3 Bean Chilli, Peppers, Roasted Sweet Potato and Spinach. My husband who does not have intolerances chose the Gluten Free Beer Battered Sea Bass. It came with sweet potato chips and peas. He enjoyed it.
Our B&B supplied a brand of tea in the rooms and for breakfast from Bari tea. We visited their local shop to buy some teas to take home. They have a huge selection of loose leaf teas. The tea shop also has a cafe area. I noticed they cater for gluten free diets and they had a gluten free and dairy free chocolate cake on display.
If your looking for free from supplies in Alnwick the best shop to visit is A World of Difference. It's an ethical fair trade shop selling gifts etc but they had a full wall of free from supplies such as sauces, flours, savoury items and chocolate. They also had a fridge with dairy free cheeses and veggie products. I treated myself to some Booja Booja truffles and a Moo Free cranberry & hazelnut bar.
There is a Morrison's store in the center of town and also a co-op express store on one of the main streets in town. These both had a small free from section with breads, milks, pasta, biscuits etc. not a huge selection but enough to get you by if needed.
While walking round the town I did notice that quite a few of the cafes and restaurants had signs in the windows advertising that they did Gluten Free items. I don't think you'd starve if you stayed in Alnwick. I didn't!
Its a lovely place to visit and i'd recommend exploring the castle and joining in on a broomstick lesson.